The stationary bike is one of the most used cardio machines in gyms and fitness centers. This popular, useful and simple machine will allow you to burn calories while doing some other simple activities like watching TV or even reading a book, although it is not ideal when exercising. If you prefer staying home or going to the gym and exercising there, this is a great choice for you, here is why:
- You can always ride your bike as the weather will never stop you.
- Your joints will suffer less than with other aerobic activity of high impact.
- You can program the kilometers to ride, the level of difficulty and the calories to burn so that you can have control over your process of losing weight or just training.
- You can focus all your attention on exercising as you don’t need to be as careful as when you ride a bike outdoors. You don’t even need to wear a helmet for protection.
- You will be mostly working cardio and your leg muscles. Be careful when adjusting the machine to your body so that you won’t hurt yourself while using it.
- You could put the bike near a window or a balcony, if you have it at home, so that you can look at different places as you want to avoid getting bored of the exercise you are doing.
- You could meet other people who attend the gym and make new friends.
- You will be safe as you are indoors!
However, you should also consider that:
- You will have to find another way to exercise your arms and upper part of your body.
- You won’t be burning as many calories as with other exercises that involve the movement of all your body. You want to complement the exercise you do on the bike with other activities like stretching or yoga for your arms and back.
- If you are training for a race, you will not be prepared for aspects like the weather or ground difficulties.
If you prefer to combine riding a bike for healthy purposes with visiting places and enjoying amazing landscapes, you really want a mountain bike. This sport is relatively new, it aroused in the United States in the late 70s, and it takes place in mountainous terrains or those with a challenging topography, such as slopes, obstacles and winding routes. So, loving outdoor activities is a must. You will need a mountain bike, which are actually very different to bikes for racing, as its structure is ideal to move in open areas that can offer breathtaking views, but that are demanding and changing as well as subjected to the weather. Nevertheless, this sport is great, seen from several points of view, and this is why:
- You can also practice this sport at a moderate degree of intensity as it is suitable for everyone at the beginning, although you will need some physical strength.
- You will prevent backaches as you can stabilize the trunk and strengthen your muscles, protecting the backbone from vibration and shock.
- You will also be strengthening your knees because the pressure they get during the cyclic movement of your feet is definitely lower than in other sports such as jogging. This cushioning favors the diffusion of nutrient substances for cartilage, which means you will have healthier joints.
- You will have, in short time, toned muscles and you will be burning calories all the time, which will help you control your weight and stay in shape.
- You will improve your coordination and balance skills when trying to keep yourself from falling.
- You will significantly increase your lung capacity as breathing is a key factor for this sport.
- You will see yourself involved with nature as this sport offers the chance to see unique landscapes while you exercise.
- You will increase your operative and improvement capacity when challenged by physical obstacles. The benefits will also be reflected on your professional and personal life.
- You can go mountain biking with a group of people or by yourself. However, when you do it as a team, you improve your teamwork skills and have the chance to meet people with your same interests.